Podio: Online Business Productivity Tool

May 31, 2011 | Written by Sue Miley

Podio Screen Shot

I don’t usually write a lot of detail about specific tools, because there is so much out there already written about everything….

but….

I keep asking clients, friends, and associates if they have heard of or tried Podio and noone knows about it yet.

So, at least for my followers, I wanted to introduce you.

What Is Podio?

One Mashable article describes it like this:

Essentially, Podio gives businesses a way to manage various processes and work tasks from one place, and it does that through the concept of “spaces.” You create a space, invite contacts, add and customize the apps you need. (The Podio App Store contains more than 200 specialized work apps.)

I enjoy using the 37 Signals Suite of Basecamp, Backpackit, and Highrise, yet Podio is in this same market and is a tool all in one.

I have been testing it for about a month and find it to be extremely effective as:

  • a personal workspace and data collection center
  • perfect for project management and client management
  • the most effective tool yet for task management. as I can see a task in a space when I am working on a specific project or client file, and then I can switch to a global task page and see all of my tasks across projects and clients.
  • it is also includes the feature of acting like an intranet for your organization.

What’s It Cost?

Actually, I am still using the free version.  You can add up to 10 users and it is still free, but then it jumps to $99 for 25 users.  I think it is very efficient and cost effective for small companies.  If you need more users you may want to call and see where the price breaks go up to before you fall in love and get attached.

What is This App Store?

If you are a techie sort of person then the app store is like a candy store where you get to pick and mix and match your aps for each space.  I have played around with several combinations and after a month have found my favorites.

If you aren’t techie, don’t worry about it, you can add the simple aps like Notes and Projects and get use to the base functionality first.  Then play around with the bells and whistles as you get time.

Everyone Else is Already Talking About It

As I mentioned, their are much more tech savvy people out there that have written reviews and have awesome screen pictures.  Here are a couple that I found useful:

Podio Threatens To Replace All Your Project Management Tools on Mashable.

Podio Is Like A Yammer With Its Own App Store And App Builder on Tech Crunch.

And here is their own blog.

Get Started

Since it’s free, it’s easier to get started than to keep reading about it.  Even if you don’t end up using it as your main tool, the “art” of trying it out helps you think through how you think about your business and the best way to organize your workflow.

Which is a great exercise in itself.

I would love to hear your comments as you use it.  Sometimes I take for granted that I try out so many tools that they become simpler for me to use.  How was it for you?  Could you jump right in?  Is it easy for you to use?  Did initial pros and cons jump out?  Share your ideas with us!

Comments

  1. says

    Thanks for the tip, sue. I’ll try it. Though I’m not a big app guy, but I keep thinking that since buying my iPad, I should start doing mor with it! This is a good start.

    Btw, you should connect with my friend http://www.thedailysaint.com who is also spreading the word about productivity tools….

  2. Joel says

    We’ve been using Podio in our professional services division. We find it has two fatal flaws:
    - There’s no way to manage visibility by role. In other words, there’s no way for us to create a workspace for a project that includes items the client see and stuff only our internal team can see.
    - There’s no really good overarching organizing principle, which would make it easier to find information.

  3. says

    I am trying to figure out if it can replace Highrise. For the life of me I cannot figure out how to build a contact database that works in Podio. I love it but I am stumped here. Of course, I emailed support so I am sure I will here back. But I don’t think I can build a database as functional as the one we have in Highrise.

    Thanks.
    Kelsey

    • S_Miley says

      I think it is different than Highrise. Podio is more of a replacement to Basecamp, which is a sister to Highrise.

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